Most people know what to do if they’re driving and involved in an accident. But what if someone hits your parked car? You may have left the grocery store to find that someone scraped the side of your vehicle. Or you parked in the street only to find new damage to your vehicle’s frame. It happens often and leaves many Michigan drivers with the same questions about what to do next. Here’s what to do when someone hits your parked car, even if they didn’t leave a note.
Understanding Michigan Insurance Laws
Each state has its own insurance laws regarding accidents and whose insurance covers the damage. States can be either at-fault or no-fault states. In at-fault states, drivers who cause the damage are liable to pay for the damage. Michigan is a no-fault state which requires the policy holder’s insurance to cover the cost of damages regardless of who caused the accident.
However, Michigan no-fault law does have a parked vehicle exception. If your vehicle is damaged while it is parked and unoccupied, and you can identify the party who caused the accident, the insurance of the party at fault is required to cover the repairs including rental fees. This is the only time you will not be required to call your own insurance company under Michigan no-fault law.
Michigan is a no-fault state. Any time you’re in an accident, you would need to reach out to your insurance to file a claim. Your individual insurance policy will outline the coverage limit, and what types of repairs are covered.
Steps to Take When Someone Hits Your Parked Car
It’s always a good idea to have a plan in place in case of an accident, and that includes what to do when someone hits your parked car. Here are some simple steps you should follow if you find yourself in that situation.
1. Call the police When Someone Hits Your Parked Car
The first thing you’ll need to do is call the police to file a report. If the driver who hit your car isn’t around, your insurance will require a copy of that report to file your claim. If the other party is present, then their insurance will need the police report.
2. Speak with the Driver
The best way to determine what coverage you’ll receive after your specific accident is to speak to both the other driver and your insurance company. If the driver is still around or left a note, you’ll need to speak with them about the details of the accident. The more details you have for the police report, the better.
3. Protect Yourself by Taking Pictures of the Damage
Make sure to take pictures of any damage to your vehicle from the accident. Snap photos up close and far away that show where your vehicle was when the accident occurred. Include notes like the time the accident occurred and how you discovered the damage. Pictures and notes will protect you from any discrepancies that may delay insurance from processing a claim.
4. File a Claim with Your Insurance Company
If the other driver is not around, you’ll need to file a claim with your insurance company. Reaching out to your insurance promptly ensures all details are fresh in your mind and included in your claim.
Getting Your Vehicle Repaired
After a claim has been filed with insurance, they’ll notify you of the settlement amount for your vehicle. You can then select a collision shop to repair your vehicle. While insurance companies may suggest where to take your car, you can still take your vehicle in for repairs at the facility of your choice.
Make sure to take your vehicle to a collision shop that you can trust. If you’re unsure of what to look for, check out this article on how to choose a collision shop you can trust.
Need Repairs After Someone Hits Your Parked Car?
Pole Position Auto Body is an auto body repair shop that’s been servicing the metro Detroit area for over 30 years. From helping with insurance claims to returning your vehicle to its pristine pre-accident condition almost 3 days quicker than the average facility, we help drivers get back on the road after an accident.